Striving to increase customer satisfaction will benefit their experience and make your insurance business more successful. High customer satisfaction tends to go hand-in-hand with positives like customer retention, referrals, and increased spend among happy clients.
A Zendesk study finds that 3 out of 4 customers would rather spend more at a company with good customer experience. Figuring out how to increase customer satisfaction can help you avoid commoditizing your insurance offerings. You can increase your odds of winning over long-term clients based on the customer experience you provide. Rather than losing clients to the lowest-priced policies.
Many insurance businesses are lacking in this department. The J.D. Power 2021 U.S. Small Commercial Insurance StudySM finds that customer satisfaction has dropped for the past two years.
This is an opportunity to make your business stand out. We’ll explore how insurance businesses can increase customer satisfaction with three primary approaches:
- Simplifying customer interactions
- Being more proactive
- Optimizing self-service options
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Simplify Customer Interactions
To increase customer satisfaction, first see how you can simplify customer interactions. Make sure customers easily get the information they’re looking for.
The J.D. Power study finds that customer satisfaction has taken a big hit. A surprising 32% of customers say they had to “exert a great deal of effort to interact with their agent.” A jump from the 10% that felt that way a year ago. Another 34% who feel this struggle with digital interactions proves technology alone isn’t a cure-all.
Insurers need to find ways to simplify interactions. Clients don’t want to jump through hoops. The channel a customer chooses to get in touch with you should be intuitive. Whether phone, website, or social, they should be able to quickly get answers. Customers value their needs being understood.
Track interactions through software. A customer relationship management (CRM) platform creates a profile. If a client calls about a problem, an agent can use the CRM tool and see past interactions. The customer won’t have to re-explain, and their needs can be met faster.
Staffing can help simplify customer interactions. Hiring an administrative assistant will help handle client queries. Customers won’t have to wait until you have free time. Now clients know that they can easily get in touch with your insurance business. Quickly responding to any questions they may have and improve long-term retention.
Be More Proactive
Seeking to be proactive will increase customer satisfaction. As you learn about what clients are initiating, you can take earlier steps to provide assistance. Creating a comprehensive FAQ section on your website will stop you from getting the same questions again and again. Notice the trends and adjust accordingly.
The time to start is now. More customers say their carriers were proactive in 2021 compared to reaching out in 2020 to check-in about COVID-related business needs. “The positive effect it has on customer satisfaction declines 31 points, which indicates insurers may have been too late in providing support to their customers,” the J.D. Power study notes.
Insurers should periodically check-in to get in front of any other types of business issues. Some new challenges will inevitably come up. Perhaps a client that has retail stores is considering opening a new location. You can proactively offer coverage options that help them navigate this growth. But only if you make the effort to know about it.
Another way to be proactive is letting clients know about upcoming renewal dates. Rather than waiting for clients to come to you to discuss renewals, setting up automated reminders for you to reach out ahead of the renewal date. Clients won’t be caught off guard and feel like they have to rush their renewal decisions. Plus, you can use these interactions as a time to discuss how clients’ business needs are changing.
Optimize Self-Service Options
Insurers can also make it easier for clients to complete tasks on their own. A business owner that has limited free time doesn’t want to call to get information about a policy from you. Instead, being able to provide clients with options like online quoting, bill pay, and claims management can go a long way toward providing a great customer experience.
Many companies across industries have limited self-service options. This is an area where insurers can stand out. “Only a third of companies offer some form of self-service, whether through a help center, knowledge base or FAQ. What’s more, High Performers, according to Benchmark data, are 76% more likely to offer self-service,” finds a 2020 Zendesk study.
Yet optimizing self-service doesn’t just mean adding a few set-it-and-forget-it resources to your website.
“For example, optimizing the customer site navigation and transitions across channels is a significant, untapped opportunity for customer service. Leaders can design a site navigation experience that guides customers toward self-service solutions while introducing assisted service at strategic points in the customer journey,” notes Gartner.
Create social media content that strategically leads to obtaining policy quotes for additional lines of coverage via a self-service landing page. Tools like chatbots can guide visitors toward the self-service tools. If needed, make sure they can still get to a human too.
Prioritize Customer Satisfaction
Figuring out how to increase customer satisfaction is important for insurance businesses. Taking steps like simplifying customer interactions, being more proactive, and optimizing self-service options can go a long way. It all starts with making this a priority.
Adding new leads and finding cost savings are important. They shouldn’t come at the expense of customer satisfaction for existing clients. Taking the time to understand current customers’ wants and needs, and putting the tools and processes in place to make clients have a smooth experience can go a long way toward helping the long-term success of your insurance business.